Dollar Index Holds Steady with Fed Meeting in Focus
The U.S. dollar held steady against other major currencies on Monday, as investors turned their attention to this week’s Federal Reserve policy meeting.
The dollar found some support after data on Friday showed that U.S. industrial production jumped in February, boosted by robust increases in output at factories and mines.
A separate report showed that an index of U.S. consumer sentiment rose in March.
The data offset an earlier report showing that U.S. housing starts declined more than expected last month.
Later in the week, the Fed is widely expected to raise rates by a quarter point at the conclusion of its two-day policy meeting. Investors will mostly be focusing on any indications as to the pace of monetary policy tightening for the remainder of the year.
Investors were still cautious however amid concerns that more top Trump administration officials could be ousted from the White House and worries over the economic impact of U.S. trade tariffs.
The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was little changed at 89.74 by 06:15 a.m. ET (10:15 GMT), just off Friday’s two-week peak of 90.38.
The euro was steady, with EUR/USD at 1.2291, while GBP/USD gained 0.40% to trade at 1.3994.
The yen was also steady, with USD/JPY at 106.04, while USD/CHF added 0.11% to 0.9531.
Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe took responsibility over the weekend for a loss of confidence in the government over a growing scandal than has seen his popularity plunge, but denied that he or his wife was involved in cronyism in a land deal with a school operator.
The scandal raised concerns over Abe’s ability to continue pursuing his Abenomics policies, which include aggressive monetary easing.
Elsewhere, the Australian dollar was weaker, with AUD/USD down 0.09% at 0.7706, while NZD/USD was almost unchanged at 0.7217.
Meanwhile, USD/CAD held at 1.3097.
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